The number and complexity of emotions I’ve been experiencing in the wake of Ian’s death is staggering. I use that word because I really feel like I’m staggering under the weight of them. The sadness alone is big and heavy enough to weigh me down. The other common ones are there too. Anger: At him, yes.. but at other things too. The world, the circumstances. Other people. Guilt… not a lot, because I do know that I had no control over him and his depression, but I have a couple things that if I’d done them differently, maybe things would have gone differently. Probably not… but maybe, just maybe. Regret, for not calling him the Monday before, for not pushing him to talk about the thing he said he needed to talk to me about, but then wouldn’t. I decided not to push in order to give him space.
There’s despair at the loss of my surety that things always turn out for the best, hopelessness because I can’t make myself believe that there’s definitely something beyond this, etc. All the ones you expect. But there’s also a bunch you wouldn’t think… like relief. I’m relieved because I know how much he was hurting. I’m also relieved because I know that if things had continued as they were, we would have continued the cycle we were on indefinitely. Until I either got fed up enough that I stopped it, or something else happened. There’s pride that he took control and did something, even if it’s not the action I think he should have taken. He did something. I feel betrayed because he promised me he’d never leave me alone, always be my friend and be there for me, never abandon me because he knew it was one of my biggest fears. I feel admiration because he found a loophole in a promise he made so that he technically did keep it, and it was clever.
I’m resentful of him for the things he kept from me, both knowledge, and parts of his life. I feel lucky that he let me in as much as he did, and I knew him so well. I’m happy that at the time of his death, we were in one of the good parts of our cycle, getting along, feeling at least somewhat close.
I feel hatred for the people who make those sites that glorified the method he used. I feel so much love for him and for the people who are being so supportive of me. I’m grateful. For the time we had together, for his family, who is amazing, for my mom and friends. I’m disappointed that he’s going to miss so much. I’m hurt that he didn’t leave some sort of message for me. I’m honored that he chose me to find him. I’m exhausted. I’m wired. I feel trapped. I feel lost. I feel lonely. I feel loved. I feel completely baffled by how he could make that decision, frustrated that I’m not able to make it myself, annoyed, in fact that I don’t have it in me to do that to people. I feel selfish for acknowledging my limits and not doing everything for everyone. I’m terrified that someone else will do the same thing he did.
That all of these different things can coexist in my head, in adjacent spaces is confusing, weird, and hard to deal with at times. I’m dealing, there’s no choice. But it sucks, and I think my emotional back is never going to recover from carrying all this weight around.
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